Recruiting: Dilbeck Shines At Nike Combine

Dax Dilbeck is like many other high school juniors who play football across the nation. He has begun receiving letters from numerous Division I programs but has yet to receive a scholarship offer. But all of that may soon be changing for the quarterback at Deer Creek High School in Edmond, Okla., after his performance at the Nike Combine in Dallas earlier this month.

Dilbeck rushed for 1,235 yards and 17 touchdowns while passing for 547 yards and another seven TDs for the Deer Creek Antlers in 2007. That was good enough to put him on the radar screen of many colleges, including Oklahoma State, Stanford and Virginia. Not only is he a good athlete but he is also an excellent student (maintaining a perfect-A average throughout high school).

But the Deer Creek senior-to-be certainly raised some eyebrows with his performance at the Nike Combine at Texas Stadium (home of the Dallas Cowboys) on March 8. Dilbeck posted the third best overall SPARQ Rating out of the nearly 1,000 high school prospects who attended the combine. His SPARQ Rating (an acronym for Speed, Power, Agility, Reaction and Quickness) was better than any other Oklahoma player attending, including two of the most highly recruited juniors in the state – Gabe Lynn of Jenks and Timothy Flanders of Midwest City.

"My high school coach (Denton Fox) was telling me before we went down there not to be worried and to just do my best," Dilbeck said. "He said that the combine couldn't shut any doors for me, but it could possibly help open some doors if I did well."

Dilbeck's most important numbers may be that he measured at 6-foot-1 and 183 pounds at the combine. "I've put on about 10 pounds since the end of (last) football season," said Dilbeck, who played in the secondary for Deer Creek last season and will be recruited as an athlete.

Dilbeck's SPARQ Rating of 99.78 was bettered only by two players – wide receiver Cody Matthews (112.8) and running back Marcus Turner (105.33) of O.D. Wyatt High School in Fort Worth.

The SPARQ Rating is based on a player's performance in four tests: the powerball throw, 40-yard dash, shuttle and vertical jump. Dilbeck's numbers were a toss of 33 feet, 10 inches in the powerball throw, he was timed electronically at 4.55 seconds in the 40, his shuttle time was 4.19 seconds, and his vertical jump of 34.1 inches was among the top 10 of all players tested in Dallas.

"When you walk out you have a card and they place it in a computer and it shows how you did. I was surprised when it showed that my SPARQ Rating was third. I didn't expect that," Dilbeck said.

Dilbeck has received letters from nearly 40 Division I colleges, including Oklahoma State, Kansas, Kansas State, Virginia, Stanford and most all of the Ivy League schools. He's hoping his performance in Dallas will earn him more than just a few more letters. Dilbeck is hoping to begin receiving envelopes with scholarship offers. Don't be surprised when it happens.

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